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Rising privacy concerns and imminent data regulation are combining to make consent a key issue for the digital economy. MEF’s Consumer Trust Working Group examines the topic in a new whitepaper: Understanding Digital Consent.

A comprehensive guide to digital consent in the personal data economy, the whitepaper looks at the regulatory requirements as well as the innovative models and technologies being trialled to help businesses implement best practice when it comes to data permissions for collecting, sharing and storing data.

The new digital economy depends on the flow of data to create attractive and targeted products and services. Building trusted relationships with consumers and companies offering such services requires the implementation of clear, understandable consent. Problems can quickly arise when companies are not transparent about what data they require and why.

MEF’s Consumer Trust Working Group has explored the big questions around digital consent including how does the law define it? What is best practice for designing consent forms and receipts? How will new regulation such as GDPR affect it? What new technologies might help managing consent easier? Download the whitepaper now.

Whitepaper Contents

Legal definitions

  • History; Consent in a digital economy
  • Types of consent
  • Current norms and practices


  • EU: GDPR, E-Privacy
  • US Privacy Shield
  • Brazil: Data Protection Bill
  • South Africa: POPI

Models, trials and tech

  • Consent-as-a-service
  • Industry standards
  • Mobile operator projects
  • Social media projects; AI, digital assistants and bots
  • Consequences of IoT; role of Blockchain

What consent looks like now

  • Good consent: design and presentation
  • Consumer attitudes: consent fatigue; Company practices
  • Data management and storage
  • Data anonymisation

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